I’ve met a lot of Etsy sellers who are reluctant to ship outside their home country. They are worried about the cost, how to ship, and if it will be too complicated. Some of my most loyal repeat shoppers have been international buyers, so for my business it’s been essential to broadening my customer base. But it’s not ideal for every Etsy shop, especially if you sell very large or heavy items. Let’s explore the topic of international Etsy shipping so you can decide what is right for your shop!
When You Should:
Products that are not too bulky or fragile (like jewelry, clothing, or greeting cards) are ideal for international shipping. My acrylic jewelry items are relatively lightweight and easy to package, so sending them abroad is a breeze. Shipping costs vary to different countries, but I’ve found that, for for the type of products I sell, it’s pretty reasonable. If someone wants an item badly enough, they will pay the shipping you are charging as long as it’s fair.
If you’re worried about how to address and fill out the customs form, using Etsy’s Shipping Labels makes it so easy! It prints all the info you need to include onto the label- you just have to remember to sign and date the form. Tracking is now also available via USPS when sending to many foreign countries. You can follow the progress of the package as it makes its way through customs and see it’s been marked as delivered. This gives you and the customer more peace of mind.
When You Shouldn’t:
If you make really heavy or big items (like tables or sculptures), international shipping might not right for your Etsy shop. When sending this kind of product within the U.S., many sellers will use UPS or FedEx, but using these carriers internationally can be very costly. The cost of shipping the item may even exceed the price of the product itself! That’s why it’s best to get a price quote for several specific countries and services when you’re deciding if international shipping is feasible for your store. If you sell large items on Etsy, you can choose not to include the international option for shipping in your listings, but include in the description to contact them for a quote.
Also, keep in mind that some foreign nations have rules about what kind of items can be imported. Certain materials, gemstones, and products are prohibited in different places, so doing a little online research can save you a lot of time and frustration. Often these restrictions are implemented to protect a country against competition for one of their main industries.
Does your Etsy store ship internationally?
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